Why Independent Writers Matter
About the Author:
Walter Rhein maintains a web page about travel, musings on writing, and other things at StreetsOfLima.com. His novels with Perseid Press include: The Reader of Acheron, The Literate Thief, and Reckless Traveler. His novel The Bone Sword was published with Harren Press, and his novel Beyond Birkie Fever was originally published with Rhemalda Publishing. He currently splits his time between the US and Peru, and can be reached for questions or comments at: WalterRhein@gmail.com.
The Whitemoon Warriors Series Book #1
Centuries of waiting...
For four hundred years, Charlie Matthews has waited for his revenge, becoming the very creature he seeks to destroy. When he finally returns to his Maker’s mansion, he knows the time is close. And only one thing stands between what he wants, and what he never knew he needed.
Leads to a single moment…
On Nessie Robinson’s eighteenth birthday, she gets an unexpected surprise. Her ex-best friend. Emphasis on “ex.” Since he left ten years ago, she’s had to deal with the overbearing power of their Master. With his return comes tragedy, and feelings she doesn’t want to face. But every moment makes them harder to ignore.
That changes everything
With one bite, Charlie and Nessie are forced to run for their lives. Leaving behind everything they’ve known, fighting for survival, freedom, and a chance at a future neither of them ever imagined.
I hate this room. Nessie dragged her feet through the door and entered her least favorite place on the entire estate. The white furniture and rugs only served to make her more anxious. One little accident, which would, of course, be her fault, and she’d spend the next several hours on her hands and knees scrubbing the entire room.
“Don’t slouch, Vanessa,” her mother chided from behind her.
She narrowed her eyes, ready to stick out her tongue at her mother until Master entered the room. Immediately lowering her gaze to the floor, the two of them bowed their heads as he passed them. She noticed a second pair of feet cross in front of her vision a few moments after and her stomach cramped. Logan, the younger male who usually fed from her, had wandering hands and a penchant for sinking his teeth to the bone. Vampires were assholes like that.
“C’mon, I haven’t got all day!” Master bellowed as he lounged on the sofa across the room.
She scrambled over to sit on the cushion beside Logan, her eyes focusing on her fiddling hands in her lap. Any moment now he’d snatch up her wrist and dig his ugly fangs into her vein. Her breaths came unevenly, her heart racing, her body bracing for the coming pain.
“You seem uneasy,” the man next to her said.
Her breath hitched as her gaze shot up. Not Logan. Definitely not Logan. That face, like a distant memory, yet so familiar. It was him. The vampire she had once called friend. Best friend, if she was being honest with herself. Before he disappeared on her, never to be seen or heard from for the last ten years. The one who’d left her here to rot like a forgotten piece of garbage. Vampires were assholes like that.
“It’s alright,” he said, reaching for her hand, which she snatched out of reach without a thought.
His eyebrows raised in surprise.
Shit. Slaves don’t behave like that. Your hand isn’t your hand when you’re a slave. She slowly held out her hand, staring at him. His face was exactly as she remembered. Dark, stormy eyes under thick brows that matched his perfectly styled black hair. His nose slightly veered to one side, and his lips were a tad too big for his face.
He glanced down at her offered hand. “Are you sure? You don’t seem like you want me to,” he asked, shocking the shit out of her. She wouldn’t be surprised if her jaw just fell off her face.
“Are you daft, man? You don’t ask her permission. She’s a fucking slave, for gods’ sake! What did those council members teach you!” Master’s eyes landed on her, and her body froze. “Come here, girl,” he commanded in a low tone that made her knees wobble as she crossed the room. Shit, now she’d done it. You couldn’t just hand over your hand like a good little slave, could ya, Ness?
As soon as she was within reach, he snatched her arm. She could already feel it bruising beneath his grasp. He yanked her down onto the unoccupied cushion, his other hand gripping her thigh to hold her in place. As his fangs jabbed into her wrist, she yelped. Even Logan’s bite had never been that bad. Like someone jabbing a needle into your vein and twisting. She clenched her teeth as Master took long, painful pulls. Don’t cry. Tears are weakness. Thankfully, it didn’t last long.
When Master released her, he shoved her off the couch. She landed on her ass on the pristine white rug. Son of a bitch! Now, there was a big red mark on the floor. “There. That’s how it’s done, boy!”
She risked a glance up at Charlie’s face. He seemed perfectly calm except for the slight ticking in his jaw. Was he upset at her ill-treatment? Or was it just a muscle spasm? Probably the latter. He hadn’t cared the last ten years, why care now, right?
by Bonnie Phelps
5 Stars: ‘I found it to be masterfully crafted, with thought, care, insight, and attention to detail—poetic prose that touch the heart and echo on the soul, full of deep emotion, abundant in pain and loss and, best of all, overflowing in joy and love.’
Nate Kincaid, wants to get out of debt and get his family off his back about his relationship status. The second means he needs a serious girlfriend, but after the death of his fiancé, he isn’t ready. No one knows about his nightmares—the ones that chase him into the dark places of grief. Dealing with debt means his fledgling veterinary practice must be
successful—business before anything else. Always. Maybe a pretend relationship would solve his second problem so he can concentrate on the first.
Full-time psychologist and part-time model, Lauren Royall, has the perfect life. As a therapist she helps people. As a model, her free spirit reigns. When Nate suggests she pose as his girlfriend, she accepts on a lark. Lauren senses his pain and wants to help. She hadn’t counted on falling for the guy or the painful memories from her past his situation evokes.
Let’s start off with some basics—name, age, what you do for a living, family, where
My name’s Nate – Nathaniel David Kincaid – when my mom was mad at me. I’m 35, live in San Antonio, and I’m a large animal veterinarian which means a lot of time outdoors. I’m the oldest of three boys, so I had to be the responsible one. Zach is a national champion team roper on the rodeo circuit and my baby brother, Josh, is a computer programmer. My mom and dad own a large cattle ranch in the Texas Hill country – just north of San Antonio – and that’s where I grew up.
What impression do you make on people when they first meet you?
I’m a stand-up guy, a regular ‘Mr. Do The Right Thing.’ Traditional, I suppose. In Texas you’re taught to tip your hat and hold a door open for a lady, help elderly people cross the street, and look out for your neighbors.
How about after they've known you for a while?
Because I look like a night club bouncer, people are surprised I’m a sensitive guy. Don’t tell anyone, but I write poetry.
Describe your ideal mate.
Kind, compassionate, loves kids, not afraid to get her hands dirty. Someone who wants to build a home. A woman who wants to make a difference in this world.
What was your first thought or impression when you met the person you fell in love
Lauren? Gorgeous. Independent. Kind of new-agey. Adventurous. Not my usual type, but there was something about her that pulled me in.
What would you change about the person you fell in love with?
At first I thought I’d want more of a homebody, someone I could count on to stay put. Once I got to know Lauren though, I wouldn’t change a thing because if I did, she wouldn’t be the woman I fell in love with. She is the things I was looking for—compassionate, loves kids, wants to make a difference—but she’s also things I thought I didn’t want—adventurous, spontaneous, a free spirit. Those qualities have opened me up to new experiences. She makes me a more complete person.
What would you change about yourself?
We both had some demons to slay. Mine was learning to embrace love again. With Lauren’s help, I’ve gotten there.
What's the most important thing in your life?
Family. They may be a pain in the backside sometimes, but they’re the people you can count on when life goes south.
Your thoughts on love?
Until Lauren, I hadn’t had much luck in that department. My fiancé died about 6 months before we planned to be married. I didn’t think my heart could take anymore hurt so turned tail and ran as fast as I could in the other direction if a woman started to get serious.
Your greatest extravagance?
Starting my own veterinary practice. Everyone said I should have joined an existing outfit, but I wanted to be my own boss. It was a risk and makes life challenging, but I’m glad I did.
Your quirky habits?
You could say I’m a neatnik. I like order in my life.
What quality do you like most in a woman?
Someone who’s grounded.
What trait do you most despise?
That would be high-maintenance women, followed by no sense of roots.
What are you most afraid of?
Losing the one I love. Been there, done that. Can’t do it again.
I’m a meat and potatoes guy, though Lauren’s teaching me to expand my horizons. Still not sure about that green stuff she drinks, but I at least tried.
What would you consider your perfect night out?
Sitting on my back patio gazing up at the stars. The kind of evening where the serenity pours in to a man’s soul. Close second, taking my favorite girl out dancing. Holding her in my arms. Moving together to the music.
Rumor has it that Bonnie began telling stories at a very early age. Photos exist of the author toddling around the corner of the house covered in mud babbling about magic rabbits leading her through the garden. Her parents were amused – until they discovered she had also walked across the newly poured cement patio – which only added fuel to the fire of her passion for writing. From then on, her active imagination continued to churn out plots and character sketches always wondering how different people would behave in similar situations.
Bonnie used her writing skills throughout her professional life as a fundraiser and marketer
for several nonprofits. She enjoyed the chance to tell and share the story of worthy
organizations. In the late 1980s, Bonnie authored a syndicated column in several California
newspapers in which she shared the experiences and misadventures of life as a wife and
mother. The jury is out on whether or not her children appreciated her candor. Because
Bonnie has romance in her soul, she also worked as a Wedding Planner for several years.
Absolutely loved it!! She craves anything sweet, revels in any chance to travel, and is
addicted to Ancestry.com. A native Californian, the author lives in Northern California with
Hard boiled, scrambled, over easy, and sunny side up: eggs are the musings of Holly Bargo, the pseudonym for the author.
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